Dismiss Notice

Interview Feedback: Visit Interview Feedback to view and submit interview information.

Interviewing Masterclass: Free masterclass on interviewing from SDN and Medical College of Georgia

Nervous... very

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Tobtolip, Feb 12, 2002.

  1. Tobtolip

    Tobtolip Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2002
    Messages:
    91
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hi all, was wondering if I can get some advice from you senior pre-meds (soon to be med students I hope!)

    So I was walking to the library trying to make copies of my arguments for my school to accept transfer credits from my previous school (I dunno why, but they refuse to accept my General Chemistry I course, despite the fact that I made an A in their General Chemistry II course)... anyways.. I met some students studying organic chemistry (they had many papers of strange looking diagrams :confused: obviously trying to memorize them). Well I got to talking and asked how Organic Chem was and they told me horror stories, one of them (who looks like a studious student) said it was her 2nd time taking the course!!!! Man, anyways I have a tough schedule next semester (Physics, Differential Eq, a computer class, and Organics arg!) Lets just say I'm scared out of my wits. Please, tell me what I need to do to get an "A" in organics =P

    Also, I dont mind doing some early preparation to get an edge (what kind of preparation should I do? (i.e. anything vitally important I should get memorized)?

    Thanks

    Tob
     
  2. wolferman

    wolferman Member?
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2002
    Messages:
    523
    Likes Received:
    2
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    Hi Tobtolip,

    Organic chemistry can be a little tricky, but it's not outside of your grasp I'm sure. My biggest piece of advice would be to just make sure you do the assigned reading indicated in the syllabus prior to each lecture in which it will be covered. Then, after lecture, make sure you cover the material again. Organic chemistry isn't one of those topics that you want to save until the last minute to try to understand. If you've seen the material prior to lecture, then you'll be able to absorb more from the lecturer. Then when it comes to working problems (and you must work lots of problems) you'll have seen the stuff a minimum of two times already. Good luck....but you won't need it. :)
     
  3. Jameson

    Jameson Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2001
    Messages:
    94
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hey Tob - I think that Organic Chem is over hyped to tell you the truth. I heard the same horror stories before I took the class. When I took the class I was anticipating exactly what I heard. But that wasn't the case. The class is,IMHO, all about learning fundamental concepts and applying them to new situations. I suggest you make up problems on your own when you take the class. Ask your self what would happen if you substituted a minor detail and apply the concepts. Good luck, and don't listen to every horror story you hear, even if the person looks like Eistein :D
     
  4. Street Philosopher

    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2000
    Messages:
    6,276
    Likes Received:
    7
    for ochem, understand the concepts. then once you do, do as many practice problems as you can. it's difficult, but not impossible. (unless you have a BAD professor like I did) :mad: :mad: :mad:
     
  5. bomback

    bomback Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2002
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    Honestly, I thought Ochem was one of my easiest classes, and I had heard a lot of horror stories too. My advice is to try to understand what's going on and just apply that as you go on. If you're able to understand the basics you'll be fine, but if you're gonna memorize you'll be screwed.
     
  6. PMPMD

    PMPMD 4G MD
    Physician Faculty 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2001
    Messages:
    1,431
    Likes Received:
    24
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    I took both semesters in summer school at a community college, and it (A) transferred to my current school, and (B) was accepted by med schools. Although, it sounds like you've had problems with transfer credit at your school, so maybe that's not an option. I say at the very least talk to as many people as you can, figure out which profs to avoid, and get your hands on some old tests. I wouldn't start memorizing structures or reactions before you start, it's not THAT bad...just be prepared to devote a good deal of time to it when you get there.

    P.S.- Diff Eq + physics + computer class...are you an engineering student? If so, right on for taking a challenging pre med curriculum, believe me admissions boards notice that.
     
  7. Doctora Foxy

    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2002
    Messages:
    5,368
    Likes Received:
    2
    Status:
    Medical Student
    I took orgo over the summer and thought it was difficult, but I did well. It was easy to be able to focus on one subject. I took it at my own school, so the credits were factored into my gpa.
     
  8. dynamite

    dynamite Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2001
    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ochem was actually one of the funner classes I've had as a premed. There are certainly some things to memorize, such as structures, properties, etc. But the most important thing is to understand the concepts. You'll find that there is a trend to most things, and that there are really only a few areas that require just rote memorization. Know the concepts, recognize the trends. And what's really, really important is to do a lot of problems. A lot. I did almost every one in the book. Not cause I'm an obsessive freak. Well, maybe... But really, you need to be able to recognize the variations, which will inevitably arise on the test. It was also helpful to work with a small group. Different perspectives can come up with more variations, possibilities. Just don't go overboard with the group thing. Sometimes people can get too creative and you end up wasting your time "predicting" situations rather than studying in a focused manner. Anyway, as with everything else, if you put your time and energy into it, it won't be as bad as people try to say it is. You may even ace it. And then you can tell the next generation of innocent premeds how easy ochem actually is.
     
  9. KDocGirl

    KDocGirl Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2001
    Messages:
    148
    Likes Received:
    0
    To get an A, you need to do some memorizing of course, but really understand what's the goal, ie what are you trying to synthesize. It's also very important to know what are the conditions for each type of reaction. My school had a very tough program, plus I had to take the advanced orgo class with all the chem majors, and so the T.A.s were sticklers for docking off points for blatant errors like mixing reagents and conditions for reactions. If you keep everything organized in your head with simple lists for solvents, mechanisms, etc., that helps a lot. FYI, I finally got the hang of how to study by the end of the course, and so I finished my final in half the amount of time. I know the T.A.s gave me a double take, but they looked over my answers and gave me a nod, which felt really good. Don't stress, it's a fun class. :)
     
  10. Wednesday

    Wednesday Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2001
    Messages:
    684
    Likes Received:
    9
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    It's all about not psyching youself out. Don't let the rumors get to you! (this pertains to the MCAT too). Organic is just as doable as any other premed class. Although it isn't all about memorization, it does include quite a bit, which is a lot of what medical school is anyway (I hear), so it is good practice. In my class people had trouble with the 3D aspect of the course. Get a model kit and USE IT. But most importantly--relax! If you get all freaked out about it now, you are just setting yourself up for a tough road.

    Those "strange looking diagrams" will actually make sense to you when you're taking the class. Don't worry!!!

    You do have a pretty tough schedule next semester. Make sure you set aside lots of time for Organic, and don't cram. I would say it is one of the worst classes to cram for.

    BTW Just because someone looks "studious" doesn't necessarily mean they are. :p

    Good luck!
     
  11. Dr. Don

    Dr. Don Senior Member
    15+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2001
    Messages:
    944
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    bro, or sis...don't sweat it, O-chem is not about memorization as many people think..it has a lot to do with understand concepts (which can be tricky!!!), but once you get them, it's cake baby!!!Trust me...I tutored O-chem....
     
  12. megkudos

    megkudos Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2001
    Messages:
    530
    Likes Received:
    3
    I would recommend just making sure you do all the assigned reading and problems (which ususally ends up being everything). The trouble a lot of people get into I think is they just don't put the time into it. I would just make sure to do some every night so wouldn't be overwhelmed or get behind. Understand the concepts, because you always end up getting problems that apply the concepts, not just spitting back information for the most part.

    I actually liked Orgo a ton better then Gen Chem, I think it just depends on the person, but you can definately do it. I honestly don't know why people freak out about it so much...it's pretty funny actually. Well good luck.
     
  13. ussdfiant

    Physician Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2001
    Messages:
    1,623
    Likes Received:
    9
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    I am echoing other posters when I say this, but DO AS MANY PROBLEMS AS YOU CAN. I first took Orgo in 1990 (and failed badly) because I did not take it seriously. Took it 10 years later and aced the coursework and the labwork. I did the assigned and unassigned problems in my text and then went back to my 1990 text and did those problems as well (many for the first time). Then I borrowed a text from a friend at another school and did those too. I know that it may seem like overkill but a) it's a premed req and you really should ace it to be competitive and b) you'll see it on the MCAT anyway. It seems like with your advanced math and physics courses, you'll ace the PS portion of the MCAT, building a strong orgo foundation can only help you with the BS portion. If you go in with a healthy respect for the beast, you will master it. Good luck!
     
  14. Medic171

    Medic171 Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2001
    Messages:
    433
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status:
    Medical Student
    I agree with what everybody said about ochem, but I think you should try to change one of the science classes to something else. It will be very challenging to get all A's with 3 hard science classes and a computer class. My personal rule is no more than 2 difficult sciences per semester because those pre-med classes are arguably the most important to get high marks in.
     
  15. Tobtolip

    Tobtolip Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2002
    Messages:
    91
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yea, about that, I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place...

    You see, my Computer Science advisors STRONGLY recommended I take cs311 and cs365 due to the fact that they do not require labs and are not as time-consuming as cs courses normally are (in fact many cs majors take those courses with ANOTHER cs class at the same time).

    Well anyways, if I could get some opinions on this I'd appreciate it.

    Here's the deal, CS 311 requires a course called abstract math (I heard this course is much tougher than diff equations, its all proofs!). Well I Plan to take this course during summer so I can take cs311 fall, then cs 365 spring (only offered in spring). That way I can take differential equations (fall, difficult but not as difficult as abstract math), and then matrix algebra (not that tough I hear).

    My other option was to take physics during summer and then I'd have to deal with cs360 my fall semester, which is a bad bad thing (many long programming assignments)... anyways my logic was I'd rather deal with physics than Abstract math &&& a hard programming class, since my math background might give me a 1-up on that class.

    So in summation:

    math 300 (summer) - pre-req for cs311
    Spanish IIa + IIb (summer)

    Fall:
    cs311
    Diff eq.
    Physics I
    O-Chem

    Spring:
    cs365
    Matrix Algebra (some what easy math)
    PhysicsII
    O-Chem II

    vs.

    Summer - physics I, SpanishII

    fall:
    CS360 (bad course, cs365 only offered in spring)
    Math 300 (tougher than diff eq)
    O-Chem
    Easy Class

    Spring:
    cs311 (somewhat easy cs)
    Matrix Algebra (somewhat easy math)
    O-Chem
    Easy Class

    Next Summer:
    Physics II

    so which do you think might you choose?

    Also, that schedule I think is very tough, but is only 14 hours... so you think since only 14 hours might be frowned upon?
     
  16. Tobtolip

    Tobtolip Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2002
    Messages:
    91
    Likes Received:
    0
    p.s. Sorry for posting something so trivial as this, but I like to get advice because my advisors here at UTK are horrible horrible (I do most of my own planning). My advisement meeting with my pre-med already got cancelled (met with cs advisor tho), so once again I must reschedule.
     
  17. warpath

    warpath Officer Cadet
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2001
    Messages:
    187
    Likes Received:
    0
    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Tobtolip:
    <strong>Hi all, was wondering if I can get some advice from you senior pre-meds (soon to be med students I hope!)

    So I was walking to the library trying to make copies of my arguments for my school to accept transfer credits from my previous school (I dunno why, but they refuse to accept my General Chemistry I course, despite the fact that I made an A in their General Chemistry II course)... anyways.. I met some students studying organic chemistry (they had many papers of strange looking diagrams :confused: obviously trying to memorize them). Well I got to talking and asked how Organic Chem was and they told me horror stories, one of them (who looks like a studious student) said it was her 2nd time taking the course!!!! Man, anyways I have a tough schedule next semester (Physics, Differential Eq, a computer class, and Organics arg!) Lets just say I'm scared out of my wits. Please, tell me what I need to do to get an "A" in organics =P

    Also, I dont mind doing some early preparation to get an edge (what kind of preparation should I do? (i.e. anything vitally important I should get memorized)?

    Thanks

    Tob</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">I sent you a PM
     
  18. Elysium

    Elysium Not Really An Old Beaver
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2001
    Messages:
    2,014
    Likes Received:
    5
    Status:
    Non-Student
    I really think one of the more important things about college is figuring out what teachers to take these classes with. I took Orgo I with an absolute maniac (no curves, no partial credit, no extra credit, no quizzes, no replacement test grades, NOTHING). He actually wrote an 8 page exam over the alkynes (which he lectured on for 23 minutes). There were a couple of problems on the test that two of my chem PhD friends at Rice U. couldn't figure out! :mad:
    Anyway, I'm taking Ochem II with a great young (he's my age - 28) teacher who loves teaching and wants us to learn. It makes a HUGE difference.
    I like Organic, I find it really interesting, but getting a bad prof will screw you up! Ask around for suggestions!
    <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />
     
  19. ValleyGal

    ValleyGal Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2002
    Messages:
    272
    Likes Received:
    0
    Another important thing is not to overwhelm yourself. If you take 4 science/math/computer classes with tons of work and lab hours, then you will not do as well in ANY of them because you have so much work total. Remember that you need to do well in those premed classes, and part of the reason I was able to do well in mine was that I spread them out and focused just on those. Don't be stuck in the mindset that you have to take all the classes now!
    Good luck!!!!!
    :D :D :D
     

Share This Page